True Weather Based Irrigation

I don’t understand why the system does not use the weather to adjust the run times of each station. My previous Hunter system had its own weather sensor that mounted on the roof of my home. The system would use the humidity and temperature to adjust the run times. More time when it’s really hot… and less time when it’s cool out. Seems basic to me. I can see programming maximum run times for each station - but that’s it.

The Solar Sync you talk about does not measure relative humidity or wind speed. It only measures temperature and solar radiation. It is an on-site sensor that cannot be calibrated like a weather station and on the wireless versions the battery cannot be replaced. When setting up the product a region is selected. That product does nothing more than adjust run times (but the homeowner or contractor chooses the run times). It also has a rain and freeze sensor. It rates low compared to Rachio that uses all of the parameters necessary to create a correct watering schedule. Solar Sync grade: C-

The Solar Sync that I had included a wind sensor. There were no input fields for watering times. Only soil, slope, plant type, sprinkler type and location. What am I missing here… Isn’t the whole point of weather based irrigation the adjusting of the watering times? I’m not trying to be difficult - I’m just trying to get a better understanding. It just makes more sense to me to adjust the watering times based on plant transpiration and not a fixed time limit.

I use a Flex Daily schedule, and from what I’ve learned from my research on the web and what Rachio does is to adjust how often watering is done, not changing the run time itself. Here is a pretty good article on it (and actually from a competitor – I used to have a Rainbird SMTe, and I think my Rachio does a much better job).

Maybe you had the ET System that Hunter became embarrassed about and took off the market. It was a failure. Was it an add-on to a Pro-C? Plus, anytime you have on-site sensors it is basically garbage in and garbage out. Weather stations at airports and other public places must go through regular calibration. Their data is accurate.

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The Rachio system does perform based on the weather. Hard core.

It’s a ‘frequency modulated (FM),’ not an ‘amplitude modulated (AM)’ system. Each zone puts down the same amount of water every time called upon to run. What hugely varies as a function of weather is how often the zone is turned on.

Best regards,


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Indeed, and it’s really the best way to do it.

If you reduce the amount of water being put down, instead of watering frequency, not only may you not put down enough to “fill up the zone” in deeper layers, but also, you increase the evaporation ratio compared to water penetration, thus decreasing the efficiency of your water usage.

Here Rachio team, have a :cake:, you rock!





New users here – my understanding is that I can’t use this functionality as we have water restrictions that say watering is only allowed on certain days. So the only options is to skip a “legal” day or increase/decrease watering times. Would be nice if this was more automatic. Any options?

Yes you can. I live in Oklahoma City where we have permanent odd/even watering restrictions. My controller is set for flex scheduling and I use the odd/even setting.

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